A Concert with Yuval Ron and the Guibord CenterSaturday, October 19th, 2013, 7pm
St. John's Cathedral, Los Angeles, California
Dialogue, Reception & Book SigningMonday, October 21st, 2013, 7pm
USC, Los Angeles, California
“We assert that new monasticism names an impulse that is trying to incarnate itself in the new generation. It is beyond the borders of any particular religious institution, yet drinks deeply from the wells of our wisdom traditions. It is an urge which speaks to a profoundly contemplative life, to the formation of small communities of friends, to sacred activism and to discovering together the unique calling of every person and every community.”
Several years ago we made a new friend. Pir Zia Inayat-Khan had been reading the writings of William Irwin Thompson, the oracular cultural historian, and invited him to visit. This was in 2007, at the very beginning of Seven Pillars’ life, and it quickly became evident that our work descends from a long lineage of individuals and groups dedicated to the realization of a new planetary culture.
The practice of presence is no easy task and, spiritually, it is perhaps the most elusive of all practices. Imagine for a moment being fully present to yourself and to your situation. That is, imagine being fully aware of all that passes through and within you and also simultaneously aware of all that impacts you from the surrounding environment—people, places, atmosphere, sensory sensations, integrated with inner thoughts, feelings, memories, and bodily reactions.
One evening in Bombay, during a gathering of disciples, someone asked, “All the religions of the world agree that unless man recognizes his own self, he is incapable of any kind of ascent. What is meant by recognition here? Is it the recognition of man’s own being or the being of the cosmos?” Others asked similar things. Responding to the questions put forth, Pir O Murshid ‘Aziz Miyan Sahib, the revered, said that he would provide a condensed exposition. The discourse continued deep into the night. The gathering was large, with every faith, creed and denomination represented. The audience listened with heightened interest and some even penned down the oration. All that was recorded has been divided into six parts and printed. This is an abridgement of the first part.